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Scholar, Scientist, and Gentleman

Riki Goldstein

Cyril Domb was one of the outstanding British Jews of the last 50 years, a world-renowned scientist who managed to blend his academic achievements with his first love — Torah.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

In 1941,with a battered Europe groaning under the onslaught of Nazi Germany, the British government turned to scientific solutions to counter the greatest military threats. Who better to call upon than promising young Cambridge graduates?CyrilDomb, an Orthodox student from London, soon found himself billeted in a small village working for the Royal Navy. Domb’s group of four scientists was tasked with developing the nascent technology of radar. Until that time, the Navy had been able to use radar to locate objects, but could not determine their altitude. The work was top secret. After six weeks, Domb returned to the Navy with a table from which anyone could read the strength of an electromagnetic field at different heights and thus calculate the altitude of an object using radar. This was a significant achievement, one that allowed Allied forces to shoot down German warplanes. Domb’s new formula was also delivered to the US government in a highly classified file. The son of two Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe had helped defeatAdolfHitler.

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